that girl

 me now....at 37 years old
 me then...at 17 years old
 I loved this little girl... we had a real close connection and I often wonder what ever happened to her.

Last weekend as I sat in Sizzler down in the States I was thinking and mentally patting myself on the back for what a BIG girl I was to be down there ... all by myself.... eating meals by myself...shopping by myself... staying in the hotel by myself... and I thought how much more comfortable I was this time compared to when I went down to Seattle in June for the weekend by myself. I was definitely a lot more self conscious. Then I went to Whistler for a night/day all by myself...and then later in Aug I drove the 26' 1977 GMC motorhome down to the Oregon Coast for a week with 3 of my girls plus 1 of their friends... all pretty big things...specially the driving/handling the RV part! ... for this 37 year old girl trying to find her self/way. I really cannot refer to myself as a lady...it just seems to age me! and I don't want to do that!!

So back to Sizzler....there I was thinking of how much I have done this summer, how much I have grown in confidence in doing things on my own, how much more comfortable I am becoming in my own skin and then it dawns on me... the realization of really HOW lost I had become!

At the very tender age of 17 I travelled...by MYSELF.. to Kenya Africa.  ( I did my DTS with YYAM) It took me 3 days in real time to get there....long flights...longer stay overs in airports waiting for my connecting flights...not much sleep...and I was 17! I had just graduated from high school just less than 2 months previous... I left in Aug.. I had turned 17 in June...this is younger than my 17 year old daughter is at this moment.... she will be 18 in March... I look at her and can't help but think.. WHAT WERE MY PARENTS THINKING??!! ... haha actually they didn't have much of a choice. I was determined.,,and I wonder where my 11 year old gets it from??...oh viey.. I wouldn't take no for an answer. I worked at Kmart during my final year of high school, opted out of the drama trip to New York City...still on my list of things to do!... and saved saved saved. I knew I was going. Like KNEW.

When I think of that girl, that determination, bravery and confidence I am in awe. That was me. I was capable of doing such a thing. Then why is this summer such a big deal?...my little stepping out this summer really seems so mundane compared to what I did when I was 17. A few months after I got bac,k a whole 30 pounds lighter then when I left, I went on another trip this time not alone but with a group. We went to Ireland for 3 weeks. I was adventurous. I was brave. I loved to travel..that part has never changed but responsibility and children have kept me home.

The part that I love about this rediscovery I am doing is that I know I am still that girl. That girl who was so brave and even held a rock python snake around her neck..who swam in shark infested waters (didn't after I saw tiger sharks swimming right close to shore and I KNOW they were tiger sharks they were that close). That girl that rode a camal. That girl who lived in close quarters with women from around the globe and adapted to the climate, mostly, who walked over snakes and had cockroaches fly in places they shouldn't be...who did 2 hours of work duties every day and hated it but made it fun as much as she could. That girl who walked for hours in a strange city with strangers and people she had just met and ate strange food and went from trying to scoop the sugar out of the bowl without any of the sugar ants getting on her spoon to just stirring them in and waiting for them to float to the top of the tea so she could scoop them out to just stirring them in and drinking it without a second thought. That girl who ate an octopus straight from the ocean to the frying pan with more chili peppers then she knew and had sweat coming out of every pore of her body.... THAT girl...is still me.

I can't wait for new adventures cuz the grown up I am has learned so much more, although my body definitely does NOT feel 17 anymore, still has the same determination bravery and confidence inside of me....it's time for the 37 year old and the 17 year old to meet!

I still am that girl!

3 comments:

Ruth said...

I love this Lala:-) You don't know how inspiring this is for me to read...

Judy said...

Lise girl - you should be a writer - you have such a way
of expressing your thoughts and they capture me --looking forward to hugging your neck on Wednesday-----

rena said...

Yes you still are that girl, only wiser, more beautiful, stronger, more resilient, kinder, more compassionate, adventurous, more creative, and ready for another road trip to Africa. It wasn't the coffee talking that invited you to go with me next year. Cause, you know, you are still that girl!!